The countries finding themselves in the coronavirus whirlwind can learn a few things from Greece’s economic upheaval of the past decade, reporters Nikos Chrysoloras and Sotiris Nikas write for Bloomberg agency in a piece titled “World’s Virus Crisis Fighters Can Learn From Greek Tales of Woe”.
The article draws parallels between the Greek debt crisis and its consequences for the country’s political and social life, and the risks facing most of the countries around the world that are dealing with the coronavirus crisis and its deep social and economic impact.
For a guide to the dangers to a European democracy enduring a uniquely debilitating economic shock, Greece is an easy example at the continent’s doorstep.
A contraction of at least 10% may be unprecedented in postwar times for most industrialized nations, but that’s what UniCredit predicts for the euro area, Britain and the U.S. as they reel from the coronavirus crisis. The experience Greece had may well be different, but of a comparable magnitude — with sobering consequences for the world’s political classes to ponder.
The Greek debt turmoil of the past decade augured a brutal blow to growth, sharpened by austerity that hit the most vulnerable in society first, as unemployment rocketed. The economic devastation fostered extremism, aggravated by political culpability for the situation. That’s a cautionary tale of what can result from such crises, according to former prime minister Antonis Samaras.
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twitter: Nikos Chrysoloras
twitter: Sotiris Nikas